06 April 2018

Wisdom School Versus Tantra

In 1995 I had a classic Wisdom School enlightenment experience of being entirely beyond the world, beyond consciousness and all experiences, yet myself, I was unknowable.  I saw that even consciousness itself seemed like a joke, as were all objects within consciousness.
For 15 years I dwelled in a kind of emptiness, the Void, where any sense of self was lost, and I would only “stare” into the void.  There was little emotion during this period of time and just the mundane activities of everyday life.  This was the kind of awakening that Nisargadatta and Robert Adams talked about, where one realizes one self, awareness, as noumena, outside of the realm of existence or experience, as outside of the manifest world.
It had taken me 27 years of arduous training to come to this realization.  I had studied under six Zen Masters, Swami Muktananda, Dhyanyogi, Robert Adams, and many others.
In 2009, I had an entirely different awakening experience, this time not to the absolute, the noumenal self, but to my existential self, the self that felt like I, me, mine but not as the body, but as spirit within and around my body.
One day I awoke feeling very happy, and I became happier and happier throughout the day.  I had been feeling energies circulating within my body for many months.  The circulating energies often had color, and also circulated around and between various energy centers within what I called my sense of presence, which was experienced as an energy body within and around my physical body.
But this day something different happened.  While feeling ecstatic bliss within I began to feel a great power arising from my umbilical area, slowly surging upwards towards my heart like a ball of light in a lava lamp.  The feeling I had was of utterly immense power accompanied by a very bright white light, rising like plasma within my gut.
It arose higher and higher into my heart and exploded with the light of a thousand suns and unimaginable power which coursed through my body, my psyche and my sense of presence.  I felt deliriously happy, and was wrapped in ecstatic bliss of the most profound sort.
This power continued upwards through my head and brain and out into space above. For me there was nothing else but this ecstatic, blissful, power and light, whose power and peacefulness made my heart bow to it’s presence in me as God.  In full worship I dropped to my knees, then to the floor in full supplication and surrender to this power, this apparent “Other.”  I was in the presence of God and was washed by his golden light of grace.  I had become totally purified, empty, worshipful of this other.
This “Other” I later was to realize was none other than myself, not in the transcendental sense of the noumenal self beyond consciousness and experience, but as the core of my being as a sentient being, as a living and feeling being, as an incarnation of the divine, of God.  I gradually realized over the next few weeks or months that this “Other” this divinity within me, was no other than I am, my sense of being alive and existing.  I was life, pure spirit, incarnated into the flesh, and God was I, the divinity I perceived was my own as life.  Borrowing a term from Nisargadatta Maharaj, I called this experience coming to know the Life Force, coming to know the divine within, and that life within me was God-incarnate.
The interesting thing was that the realization of the noumenal self was so difficult to obtain.  It had taken me literally tens of thousands of hours of meditation and studies under at least nine different gurus before I found this experience, and it was utterly life-changing.  But the second experience, which I call realization of the Manifest Self really took less than a year, and was such a delightful and exciting path compared to the previous path of 27 years and the 15 years of aftermath dwelling in peace and the void, that I knew without a doubt, that this path was one best suited for Westerners in this day and age of instant gratification, and utter confusion and lostness within society as a whole and more so, in the spiritual marketplace.
The Manifest Self was so easy to obtain compared to the dreary path of Advaita, or the no mind state of Zen where nothing is ever understood by the mind, and which took a lifetime to master.  The problem with Advaita and Zen was the lack of respect paid to emotions and to the movements within everybody’s energy bodies, which were not even acknowledged in Advaita and Zen, and were considered as illusions by Zen monks.
But what delightful illusions they were!  To feel every moment of the day of bursting of happiness within one’s heart and gut, feeling the various energy complexes within the subtle body that lies within the physical body, feeling the flowing of energies, constant sates of bliss, and for women, almost continuous orgasms which many experience as part of becoming acquainted with their subtle bodies.  They discover that orgasms really have little to do with physical sex, when liberated from the concepts that they are always tied to physical sex.  Indeed, they are more tied to the opening of one’s heart.
It is so astounding for the spiritual practitioner to learn that liberation comes not from rejecting one’s body and sensual experiences as being something to be transcended, but by becoming ever more aware of experiences and energies within one’s physical body, the so-called “subtle body,” which I also call one’s sense of presence, because it feels like you, like your source, like your manifestation.  With these experiences of the energies within one’s sense of presence, for the first time in your life you know who and what you are, all doubts flee, and even though you feel great excitement and happiness and bliss, there is a sense of completion of having finally attained an understanding of who and what you are, and with that the blockages to accurate actions and accurate discrimination begin to disintegrate.
This website was originally designed in 2006 to present the teachings of my final guru, Robert Adams, as well as my other teacher, Jean Dunn’s understanding of Nisargadatta as presented in her three books and during my personal relationship with her.  However, after my experience of the Manifest Self I had no choice but to change my teachings, because I saw the realization of the manifest self was far easier to obtain, and could be obtained by a much larger audience than discovering oneself as the absolute, the Witness.
I was to discover later that the transcendental experiences and knowledge of being the noumenal witness beyond all manifest experience, becomes more easily available to someone who is awakened to their Manifest Self.  The manifest world is perceived as a play which one can participate in, even joyfully, and at the same time recognizing that you could die at any moment and not feel the slightest consternation or fear. 
Therefore, I am in the process of reorganizing this site and opening it up to more of a Tantric approach of using emotions, love, developing ongoing experience of internal energies energies through various methods, and listening to sacred music to develop devotion and surrender as a way of life, not only to the God within but towards others, because I found by finding the energy core in and other, and loving it in another, I was able to discover it in myself, and when I discovered it in myself, it revealed itself to me in its full stature and glory as the Manifest Self, as the Life Force, as God.

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